Saturday, March 20, 2010

Perspectives need changing.

I can't say that I live in the best part of San Diego.  The place where I'm at has remote controlled gates at all entrances, and we're a mishmash of condos and apartments, so there's a lot of people coming in and out of here, though for the most part, I've had almost entirely pleasant run-ins with my neighbors.  That wouldn't be a 100% success rate, and though it's close, that 1% of unsuccessful run-ins would almost entirely have to do with the time that I while I was walking out to my car and saw some fresh graffiti on a wall, which unsurprisingly matched the graffiti on my car.  I was able to get it off pretty quick, but still, that notion that someone was so willing to vandalize and/or damage my property stuck in my head for a while.

Last week as I was driving out of our parking lot, I noticed this lifted, fullsize Ford pickup that just happened to have four flat tires.  After thinking about it for a moment, I figured that there was really only one possible way that all four tires (large and durable as they were) could possibly go flat at once, and that's if someone else took it upon themselves to free the trapped air in those tires.  And seriously, how quick a job is that?  ...stab, stab, stab, stab... walk away.  And I thought, what if it happened to me?  I'd probably be pretty much out of my mind angry knowing that 1) someone felt free to do such a thing, and 2) now I have to pay for it.

Yesterday, I found out that my grandma's alzheimer's has finally gone from bad to worse, and that her doctors are recommending that she be moved to hospice for the final months of her life, which could be up to six, but they don't really know.  The news hit me hard, harder than I was expecting.  I've never really been moved by the notion of death, I'm sure in part because it's been so distant from me for so many years.  And just as I've been hoping to get reconnected with my grandma, since she IS the best Nykanen I know, thinking that she might not actually be around forever as so I just assumed keeps reopening the same hole inside that I let distraction and life keep recovering.

So last night, I drive into my parking lot and see that same not-so-lifted truck still sitting on pancake tires, and realize that if that happened to me now, it would be a trivial matter.  So what if my tires go flat?  So what if my computer might crash and I lose thousands of songs I've collected over the years?  So what if I lose my job?  I have family.  I have a girlfriend that loves me.  I have friends that love me too.  I know that I have people around me who are willing to invest their time, energy, and resources into me because they want to.  And I have the attention of Almighty God who allows me to mess up the gifts that He gives me only to bless me all the more when I come back see Him again.

I wish I didn't have to learn about trivial needs and reactions this way, but this fantastic 84 year old woman who is my grandma will have earned her rest once she gets to that point.  I love her, and sarcasm is never funnier than when she deals it out.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Oh, to give in to sleepingdom.

Sleep is such a weird thing sometimes.  It seems like for everyone else, once the drowsiness kicks in, they just can't wait to lay down, pass out, and run off into happy-dream-sleeply land.

I stay up because I feel like I'm gonna miss out on something.

Even though most all shoppable stores have closed, there's nothing worth watching on TV, and Fail Blog wont post anything new until tomorrow morning, I swear there's something that still needs to be done or seen.

But there's not.  And what can I do, really, when my legs stopped being productive two hours ago and my eyes feel like dried orange peels and are just about as useful (I saw old tangerine peels in my trash can and felt that an appropriate comparison ... no true poetry was harmed in the making of this story).

I'll go give it another try.  As for the rest of you ... good morning, since you have probably all ready had your good night's sleep.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Sheep or Shepherd

So there's David: young, handsome, blessed by God (1 Sam 16:12-13), and highly skilled AT (drumroll?) ...tending sheep. Of course, he performs and experiences incredible things in the future, but when you are initially introduced to him in First Samuel, he is a shepherd. Watches over sheep, fights wildlife for the sake of his woolly responsibility, but most of us wouldn't be very interested in this kind of life. We're all looking for that "Goliath moment" where we are not only proving our worth (even if it is usually only to ourselves), but we get a glimpse of what potential we have and what we may have really been born to do. This whole idea is better illustrated in "Looking for Goliath" by Jonathan Acuff at his site "Stuff Christians Like".

What stuck out to me when reading his entry was, like I mentioned, that David was a shepherd. Yes, he became a king eventually (2 Samuel 5:3), but he was a shepherd to start. Sometimes you have to exist in places, jobs, housing, etc. that seem to have you walking nowhere near where you thought you would be at this point in your life, but that may just mean that you have simple sheep to watch over for now until you are placed in charge of a country (figuratively or literally, who knows?). But my concern (for myself and others) is that if you find yourself surrounded by sheep, there are usually only two things you could possibly be: a shepherd ... or another sheep. And remember, shepherds have been known to become kings; sheep have been known to become sweaters.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Man I love stuff.

I'm so easily excitable over things sometimes. I just picked up Punk Goes Pop, vol.2, and if you ever wanted to hear Britney's "Hit Me Baby One More Time" with a little more Heavy Metal influence, that cd's got it. And when it comes to technology, forgetaboutit. If there's something missing in your home entertainment system that could just make it amazing, I am so ready to help you find it and get it set up so it does wonderful things. If you want to save your movies on your computer to then play through your tv just to skip the step of trying to find the dvd on the shelf it's sitting on, I might be able to make it happen. And I LOVE IT!

Oh, and I'm a Christian, talk to God, witness miracles everyday, blah blah blah.

Is that what I'm like?! Seriously?! I'm more excited to talk to people about a new application I found for my iPhone that lets me play my phone like a trumpet than I am to tell them about God, Heaven, Hell, real death and real life? This is ridiculous. Sometimes I feel like I know my purpose in life, and sometimes it seems a little hazy, but I'm pretty sure this is not it.

So are these fun electronics more important to show and display to the world than God is? Of course not. Why do I do it anyway? Because I think I've forgotten how important it is to show the world who God is. When I'm even faintly in tune with God's direction, I've seen what humanity is really like and what's actually broken inside; I've seen hearts feel that hadn't for years because of the emotional scars others have left; I've seen writings that are thousands of years old change a person who had nothing in common with the original author besides being a child of God; and I've seen myself at my best - concerned, in love, willing to serve until my hands bleed, all the time knowing that every effort I make for others has a purpose of eternal significance.

So I guess it comes down to priorities. Of course I'm still amazed by God, or at least I still have the capacity to be. I haven't been very much lately just because I haven't been on the lookout. You can walk through a museum and still miss the beauty that's there to be seen simply because you're texting on your phone (that's my technology tie-in). So I've realized that I need to start looking in the same places I used to to see what God's got His hands on right now, restore the foundation I once had when I knew His Scriptures, and just remember what it's like to be excited about what God could do with me each day, on each day.

So I look foward to some changes being made. I'll be looking out for some amazing things to happen in and around my life. And I still like Punk Goes Pop.

Friday, March 27, 2009

We are in the future

I was at the gym yesterday and saw a guy with a silver pair of wireless headphones on with a big blinking blue light on the side. It was wireless, slightly gaudy, and pretty much what 1988 would have expected 2009 to be like.

We are living in the future.

I have a phone that can check my bank account, update my friends on the other other side of the world about what I had for breakfast, tell me how to get to the closest garage to get an oil change, and it still can call my mom because she misses me. There's a memory card the size of a quarter in my camcorder that holds more information than my family's first computer would ever dream to. I can play new movie trailers on my TV through my DVD player, just in case I wanted a bigger screen than my laptop can provide ... that is of course unless I decided to hook my laptop up to my TV and make it an over sized computer monitor.

Video game consoles can stream movies almost instantly, pinkie sized ear buds can take phone calls without even seeing your phone, and specially magnetized cook tops can boil water in well less than 2 minutes. These are new, fantastic times, and I have a special affection for technology and all the potential it has to offer. But, sometimes, I really don't need to go digital to take care of something. I have to go oldschool analog and talk to someone directly when things aren't right. I mean, sometimes you loose those little things like grace and interpersonal communication when it comes to text messaging.

So take care of the analog hearts, and then go watch some digital movies together.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Musicals, huh?

As I was sitting in my room typing a paper, my roommate and his girlfriend were watching the movie/musical Newsies. As I was listening to the movie and her singing through my wall, I couldn't help but come to an interesting conclusion: I have no interest in ever seeing that movie. Outside of potentially sitting and watching the movie with others where it's the best option I have at the time, I will probably not see that movie ever.

That epiphany made me curious why I would avoid a movie so passionately, because I know I have the capacity to enjoy the occasional musical now and then. So I shared this little dilemma with the company in the house, and with her experience in theatre, she helped me narrow down the factors that seem to be influencing me. She asked my opinion on different musicals and plays I may have seen, and it turns out dark comedies are my entertainment of choice. For example, I'm watching Sweeney Todd right now and I'll catch myself singing along with it or gritting my teeth. But the thought of sitting down to watch Newsies or High School Musical or any other performance that makes everything poppy and upbeat and ridiculously manic makes me anxious inside.

So it seems I appreciate emotion. When performances lack any real representation of what people really feel, it makes me anxious.

Why do I admit all this? I dunno. I just really wanted to say how much I don't want to see that movie. Not to say that it isn't a quality production, which I'm sure it is. I felt like being blatant and a little abrasive for a bit. Goodnight.

Afterthought: I realized that my preference in musicals resembles my preference in people. Not that I necessarily enjoy hanging out with murderous antiheroes (though to be honest, I don't really know that many), but I appreciate people who show true emotions and don't just put on a smiley face and plays happy. So that's my tie-in. Wham-o.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Note to self

Don't try and study your class readings in your truck under those yellow parking lot lamps. Apparently any and all highlighted and therefore important facts are made unnoticeable.
Because they're yellow.
And so is the lighting.
So annoying.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I love food

Food does wonderful things for me. Admittedly, I wasn't doing so great yesterday. And by yesterday, I mean from the beginning of yesterday starting around midnight since I opted to skip sleep in favor of getting a paper done. So no sleep makes me a little cranky.

Class was at 4, and I finish around two. My mood went from 2 out of 10 up to a 5 just because I was finishing and I got to do a little biblical reflection in the paper too. I get to school, check my mailbox, and find a paper that I surprisingly got an A on that doesn't seem to happen in that class. Mood: 8 out of 10. But then, when things couldn't get any better, a buddy of mine in class was having a birthday the next day, so his wife brought in cake and cookies for class that night.

Mood: 10.5 out of 10

I was so very happy with my life at that point. And obviously, cookies didn't fix my mood from junk to jubilant, but I definitely ad a great night after that. Same thing with today. I hadn't eaten, went to the gym, needed to do some laundry, and was just gonna eat whatever I could find in the fridge. But then I saw some forgotten raviolis. Chicken and roasted garlic to be specific. I boiled those up, pulled out some sauce I had made last week, and shredded some parmesan cheese over it. Lovely. Throw in some lemonade I mixed with some grapefruit juice, and it was a great little lunch.

It wasn't just eating it that gave me the happy feelings (though it helped), but preparation of something I know is gonna be great was satisfying too. It was almost like creating artwork, except I eat the canvas in the end.

All that to say, I'm feeling well today. Content, happy, um ... full. I am blessed with a break from stress, and perhaps a new opportunity to do things right.

Friday, November 7, 2008

I can't think right now.

I don't think I want to either.
Which is why this entry ends now.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Perspective and presentation

I've always been hesitant to start consistently posting blogs because I've always seen these sites as either chances to keep simple updates on life for those who probably know about most of it anyway, or a place to constantly vent personal issues to a public forum, and whatever one's motivations are for needing that kind of attention can be questionable too. And that's me: questioning motives.

And yet, a dilemma is brought to light: what motivation do I have that would make me want to put my personal happenings in text for anyone who can find me? Well, basically, whatever I choose to show you is not what you're going to see.

Confused yet?

As I go on to talk about my reactions to issues and difficulties I'm having with the political arena and the way my dishwasher cleans my plates, the way I choose to present my thoughts will be skewed by my perception, which in turn will be misread by your perception, which means at any moment and time, what you're going to be reading is potentially not at all what I wrote.

So whether I'm talking about how I almost passed out in class last night or am really venting about some major stuff, this is safe. Mostly. The vagueness that potentially makes this safe also opens the door to misinterpretation too. But at that point, big deal.

It's just the internet. What's really true on here anyway?